The FBI and CIA are now in agreement that the Russian government used hacking to disrupt the U.S. Presidential election in part to aid Donald Trump.
CIA Director John Brennan said in a memo to his staff that he met with FBI Director James B. Comey and Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr., and all three concurred on Russia’s involvement and motivation.
“[There] is strong consensus among us on the scope, nature and intent of Russian interference in our presidential election,” Brennan said, per the Washington Post.
“The three of us also agree that our organizations, along with others, need to focus on completing the thorough review of this issue that has been directed by President Obama and which is being led by the DNI,” he continued.
However, the agencies do not believe aiding Trump was Russia’s only goal. They also believe Russia’s intent was to undermine faith in the U.S. electoral system.
Trump has consistently denied reports that Russia played any role in his stunning victory over Hillary Clinton in November.
“I think it’s ridiculous,” Trump said on Sunday. “I don’t believe it. I don’t know why and I think it’s just, you know, [Democrats] talked about all sorts of things. Every week it’s another excuse. We had a massive landslide victory, as you know, in the Electoral College… No I don’t believe that at all.”
In audio leaked from a recent speech by Clinton, she asserted that Russian President Vladimir Putin directed the hacking in retaliation for her criticism of Russia’s parliamentary elections in 2011, which she called, “unfair, not free, illegitimate.”
“Vladimir Putin himself directed the covert cyberattacks against our electoral system, against our democracy, apparently because he has a personal beef against me,” she said, per the New York Times.